3 Unique Cricket Shots That These Batsmen Made Famous
T20 cricket has brought innovation in the batting department like perhaps nothing has ever. Batters have been forced to either evolve quickly and speed up with the trends of the game or be left behind. The same goes for the bowlers who have to counter every shot a batsman can potentially play.
Transformation in the thought processes of batsmen in white-ball cricket has seen drastic changes. Batters come as if almost set from the dugout knowing that they could be required to swing their willows from the first ball they face.
With that bowlers have also found ways to tackle, and have made progress when it comes to planning and tactic and bowling to the field. In the aim of playing the field, a few batsmen over the years developed some rarely seen shots before.
Here are 3 cricket shots that these batsmen made famous:
Switch Hit - Kevin Pietersen
Former England captain Kevin Pietersen was much ahead of his teammates when it came to batting in white-ball cricket. While his teammate stuck to their conservative batting approach, Pietersen would take the bowlers head on with his funky, aggressive, and dominating style.
Kevin Pietersen stunned everyone when in way back in 2008, he used the switch hit first - twice - against New Zealand medium pacer Scott Styris. “Unbelievable,” the commentator was left astonished.
“Everybody wants brand new ideas, new inventions and that’s a new shot. Nobody has seen it before,” Pietersen himself said, sounding proud of his stroke that then was perfected by the likes of David Warner and Glenn Maxwell in the past few years.
Dil-Scoop - Tillakaratne Dilshan
It is something to boast about when they nicknamed a shot after you: Tillakaratne Dilshan, the proud proprietor of the famous ‘Dil-Scoop’, which is a better but riskier version of the ramp shot. While in the ramp shot, the batsman is looking to go over the short fine leg fielder, in the Dil-Scoop, the batter aims to send the ball over the wicket-keeper’s head using the pace on the ball.
During the 2009 T20 World Cup, Sri Lanka opener Tillakaratne Dilshan unveiled this shot, bending low, head down, bat almost straight and scooped Shane Watson’s delivery over the keeper to leave the world going Woah!
Helicopter shot - MS Dhoni
Nobody plays the Helicopter shot better than the man who made the shot itself famous: MS Dhoni. The former India captain burst on the scene with his brute power and ultra-aggressive batting. After being given the finishing duties, Dhoni then added another arrow to his quiver with the never-seen-never-heard Helicopter shot in a 2005/06 ODI series against England at home.
A video of one of his earliest Helicopter shots went viral - when he cracked a full-length delivery from James Anderson over deep mid-wicket for a six with this unusual shot, flexing his power and muscles. Earlier, his body used to twirl around along with the bat, but in later years, Dhoni improved on his body balance and got better at timing while playing the Helicopter shot.